One Touch. Karen Thompson

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If you were here,
I would take the measure of your skin
with my fingers –
just a little brush across your arm
to blend my self with you
in a small, unobtrusive way:
not to wake you,
not to demand your attention,
not to disturb your dreaming –
but simply to stake
my claim on your next breath
and the words you would speak to me:
Hush. Come closer.

If you were here,
I would wrap my thoughts around you
and take you with me
into a world that would allow
no apologies for need
or the wants that surface
when the dark presses too close
to leave any room for sleep
and imagination becomes more a torment
than a virtue:
this constant whirling
of words and images from a
past and future that engulfs now
and chokes the air
with disturbances that leach the tears
from my eyes and leave me trembling.

I hold the memory of you
in my blood,
in my bones,
in my skin,
in my eyes reflected in the mirror:
did you dream me into being
or did my reality separate into
the half that is alone
and the half that is missing
without you?

When we are lost in our days,
we can choose the means of touch –
but here, in the geography of alone,
all maps birth confusion
descending to blind corridors
narrow with a wanting
that accepts no solace
without the touch
that is denied.

Karen Thompson